Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for the 'Events' Category


A Behind-the-Scenes Look at How Homespun Yarn is Made

July 9th, 2012

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Recently, Jack and I went to the Knit & Crochet Show, a wonderful yarn festival held by The Knitting Guild Association and Crochet Guild of America. I’m always happy when the Knit & Crochet Show is held in Manchester, New Hampshire, because it means that in addition to seeing all of my yarny friends (and experiencing the beauty of converted mill buildings like the one shown in the slideshow below), I get to take a drive out of town to visit the mill that produces our Homespun and Silky Twist yarns.

Homespun: An American-Made Yarn

Over the years, I’ve posted about our visits, and since I often get requests for a look at how this yarn is made, I’m happy to share some photos from our latest visit to New Hampshire and the mill.

Built in 1864, the mill is a facility that’s steeped in New England’s rich textile history, and we’re proud that it makes some of our most popular products. Secret tip: Look out in the coming weeks for an announcement about a brand NEW product from Lion Brand that is also made at this location.

If you want to learn more about Homespun, click here to pick up a copy of our book, The Story of Homespun. 


Announcing a NEW Column in The Weekly Stitch featuring Franklin Habit

July 5th, 2012

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If you’ve ever seen a clever cartoon about a sassy sheep and her knitting, chances are that you’ve met Dolores. The man behind the sheep is writer/illustrator/knitter/teacher/photographer (the man wears many hats!), Franklin Habit.

I first met Franklin in 2011 at Vogue Knitting Live New York, and since then, I’ve had a wonderful time getting to know him and his fantastic work. That’s why I’m so pleased to announce that Franklin will be joining us once a month in The Weekly Stitch, LionBrand.com’s newsletter, with a brand new column!

Excited as I am? Then get in the mood with episode 108 of YarnCraft from earlier this year, in which I got to interview Franklin about why he loves antique patterns, how to shoot better yarn photos, and the classes he teaches. Click here to read the show notes and/or listen using the player below:

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Having trouble with the audio-player? Click here instead [MP3].

About Franklin Habit

Writer, illustrator, and photographer Franklin Habit is the author of It Itches: A Stash of Knitting Cartoons (Interweave Press, 2008–now in its third printing) and proprietor of The Panopticon (the-panopticon.blogspot.com), one of the most popular knitting blogs on Internet.  On an average day, upwards of 2,500 readers worldwide drop in for a mix of essays, cartoons, and the continuing adventures of Dolores the Sheep.

Franklin’s other publishing experience in the fiber world includes contributions to Vogue Knitting, Yarn Market News, Interweave Knits, Interweave Crochet, PieceWork, Cast On: A Podcast for Knitters, Twist Collective, and a regular column on historic knitting patterns for Knitty.com.

These days, Franklin knits and spins in Chicago, Illinois, sharing a small city apartment with an Ashford spinning wheel and colony of sock yarn that multiplies alarmingly whenever his back is turned.

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Are You Participating in the Ravellenic Games?

June 28th, 2012

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Ravellenic GamesThe London Olympics are less than one month away! If you’re a member of Ravelry, you know what that means: The Ravellenic Games! Formerly known as the Ravelympics, this event brings together yarncrafters from around the globe as complete yarncrafting projects during the duration of the Olympics. Each participant selects a team (think of it as your country) and participates in special yarn-related events, including Sock Put, Sweater Triathalon, Synchronized Stash Busting, and more. There are just two rules: challenge yourself and finish the project during the Olympics (July 27th – August 12th)! For more information, be sure to visit the Ravellenic Games Ravelry board.

In the meantime, we want to help you prepare! Get 15% off your LionBrand.com purchase of supplies for the Ravellenic Games; just enter code rav2012 at checkout! This coupon is good for US orders now through 11:59pm EDT on Friday, July 6th, so you’ll be able to receive your supplies in time for the mass cast-on during the Olympic opening ceremony. Still looking for a group to join for the Ravellenic Games? I kindly suggest our friends at the Vanna’s Choice Fan Club.

So, what are your plans for the Ravellenic Games? Do you have a project in mind? Share your ideas in the comments!


Let’s Celebrate World Wide Knit and Crochet in Public Day!

June 13th, 2012

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World Wide Knit in Public DayIt’s that time of year again: World Wide Knit (and Crochet!) in Public Day is upon us! I love this unofficial holiday because it encourages crafters to come together and celebrate their amazing skills. Now through Sunday, people are gathering all over the globe to show off their yarncrafting skills in public. If you’re in the New York area, you might see some familiar faces at Saturday’s event at the Brooklyn Public Library!

Are you interested in finding a gathering near you? Click here to search the official WWKiP Day website. If there’s no meet up scheduled in your area, you can still celebrate! Simply take your yarn, hooks, and needles to your local coffee shop, park, restaurant, or other public space and start crafting. Make today and every day your own personal WWKiP Day!

Are you celebrating WWKiP Day this year? Where do you plan to crochet or knit in public? Let us know in the comments!

Image courtesy of wwkipday.com.


Announcing Our Summer 2012 Crochet-Along: the Glittery Shrug!

May 17th, 2012

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Each season we host a crochet- or knit-along, a virtual event in which yarncrafters come together here online to work on one pattern together, share their experiences, and to learn together. There’s no need to sign up! Simply follow along with the blog posts at your own pace as you crochet your project, and feel free to share your comments and/or photos as you progress.

The Votes Are In!

Thousands of you voted, and this season, we’ll be making the Glittery Shrug in Vanna’s Glamour. This crochet-along will be hosted by Vanessa, one of our fantastic associates at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio (our retail store & education center in New York City).

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Crocheting Flowers and Inspiring Others to Yarncraft

May 4th, 2012

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About two weeks ago, I had the great pleasure of attending SNAP!, a three day conference held at Thanksgiving Point, Utah which brought together hundreds of amazing D.I.Y, crafting, and home decor bloggers.  I was surrounded by creative women who have a passion for sharing things like  photos, projects, recipes, and parenting tips online; you could spend hours browsing through the blogs of these talented crafters.

While I was at SNAP!, Zontee joined me in hosting a crochet party after conference hours with the very talented and creative blogger Cindy, from Skip to My Lou.  We thought crochet flowers would be a fun project, since flowers can become great embellishments and accessories.  One simple crochet flower can be used for a broach, headband, and even a hair pin; there are so many different possibilities. A few of these bloggers already knew how to crochet, but most of them didn’t.  Lion Brand Yarn and Skip to my Lou thought that SNAP! would be the perfect venue to round up a few of these bloggers and teach them how to crochet.

Most people got the hang of it and were crocheting little flowers before the end of the event, and those who didn’t have enough time to practice and complete their flower, had a fun time chaining and thinking about the different ways chains can be useful (belts, necklaces, bracelets, garlands, etc.).  It’s always good to challenge yourself a little and learn something new – persistence pays off!


Cindy demonstrating to the crowd.

Heather from Whipperberry knocked out this granny square!

Mandi from Vintage Revivals crocheted her first flower & made a headband.

Marie from Make and Takes and Becca from Blue Cricket Design having fun crocheting.

 

A special thank you to The Chocolate for providing “yarn ball” cupcakes, Natalie of “Sweet” Hobby for providing yarn inspired and granny square cookies, and thanks to Utah Kernel for donating the gourmet popcorn!

Have you taught or inspired any to knit or crochet lately? Share your experience with us!


My First Trip to Stitches West: Sharing the Lion Brand Experience on the West Coast

March 12th, 2012

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This is a guest blog post from Michelle, manager of the Lion Brand Yarn Studio, our flagship store in NYC. Michelle, Brandyce, and Zontee hosted the Lion Brand booth at Stitches West at the end of February. 

This was my first-ever trip to a Stitches show, and it was a fabulous experience! Being the Studio Manager means that I spend a lot of my workday at a computer screen, and I don’t usually get out onto the sales floor as often as I’d like to. So Stitches was a welcome change. I got to talk to so many lovely people and see all kinds of beautiful garments and other handmade items. It was like being in a living, moving art gallery! And with the Stitches Fashion Show and so many interesting knit & crochet pieces roaming around, my to-do list grew about a foot!


Keep your mouse over the slideshow to read the captions. Please note: If you’re viewing this blog post in your email or RSS reader, you may need to click the title to view it online.

I really enjoyed being able to chat with customers and hear your feedback. Lots of folks had had the chance to visit the Lion Brand Yarn Studio, and all of your kind comments were and are greatly appreciated! We do our best to make sure you have a great time when you visit us, so to hear so many nice things on the opposite coast is a real boost. And of course we love to hear your feedback and suggestions. It’s great to hear what you’re excited about…even if we had to tear you away from Amazing Man first! (Sorry ladies, he’s spoken for!)

The best part about going to the show is seeing old friends and making new ones! Can’t wait to see you all next time!!

If you’re attending Stitches Midwest or Stitches East later this year, look for the Lion Brand booths there!

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Announcing Our Next Crochet-Along Featuring the Half Medallion Bag, Designed by Dora Ohrenstein

October 27th, 2011

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Calling all crocheters! We know you’ve been waiting patiently all season for our next crochet-along to start, and now the wait is over! Right on the heels of our Wisteria Shawl Collar Pullover Knit-Along, we’re starting our NEW crochet-along NEXT THURSDAY!

What’s a crochet-along, you ask? A crochet-along is a virtual event in which hundreds of crocheters all make the same project with the help and support of each other–and our expert crochet-along host. New blog posts go up each week, here on the Lion Brand Notebook, with hints, tips, and advice on working on the next step of your project. Follow along or work at your own pace. No need to sign up–just read the posts and let us know about your progress by leaving comments!

For this crochet-along, our host is none other than the designer herself, Dora Ohrenstein (pictured below left). She’s the author of Creating Crochet Fabrics and the upcoming Custom Crocheted Sweaters. Want to know more about her? Listen to an interview with her on our podcast, YarnCraft, by clicking here [MP3]. (Fast forward directly to the interview by going to 17:20.)

Dora has created this exclusive Half Medallion Bag pattern for us, with bobbles and front post stitches for added interest; click here for the pattern! It features our Martha Stewart CraftsTM/MC Extra Soft Wool Blend.

We’ll be talking about selecting your yarn, getting gauge, and all that good stuff next Thursday, so be sure to come back then! In the meantime, be sure to join our Ravelry group.


Fall Colors Come Alive with “Summer Into Fall” by Artist Suzanne Tidwell

October 9th, 2011

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Photo credit: Jeff Newfeld. If you’re viewing this blog post in your email, please click on the blog post’s title so that you can view the full slideshow on the blog.

One of the things that I love most about working with yarn is that it inspires us with its colors and textures. By working with each of our unique palettes, we create something that’s completely our own.

Taking her cues from the colors of nature, fiber artist Suzanne Tidwell has created her latest installation in Occidental Park, in Seattle, Washington, covering dead tree stumps (considered eyesores by the local community) with beautiful knit sleeves. Selecting from the diverse palettes of  Vanna’s Choice and Vanna’s Choice Baby, Suzanne has created some unexpected color combinations that truly pop. The color block style of the sleeves remind me of a Rothko painting–they are so vibrant and inspiring.

If you’re in the Seattle area, I hope you’ll visit “Summer Into Fall: Sammamish Trees,” up from now until December 16, and enjoy this lovely splash of color.


Yarn Lovers at Citi Field

October 2nd, 2011

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Regular readers of the blog know that I am a big sports fan, and I love when I get to combine my love of sports with my love of yarn. It’s the end of Stitch N Pitch season, and as usual, it’s been a season full of great baseball and lots of yarncrafting. Here in New York, I was proud to once again serve on the organizing committee and to be able to attend a game at Citi Field with my fellow yarn lovers. Citi Field is a truly special place, and this year, the committee and I, along with hundreds of knitters and crocheters yarnstormed (or “yarn bombed”) the stadium in Mets colors. Then we sat down for the game and enjoyed our crafting while watching the game. As a special bonus, the committee and I got to go out on the ball field, and I even got to meet Mr. Met.

Check out some of the photos from the event below!


If you’re reading this blog post in your email, please click on the title of the blog post to view the full blog post and slideshow online.

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